It’s business as usual for Border swimming and water polo clubs after news this week proposed lane hire fees would be waived.
While it has provided some short-term comfort and will allow both seasons to get under way for another summer, there’s still a number of concerns from the committees of both sports.
Ovens and Murray District Swimming Association president Brendon Shiels admitted the current agreement isn't too dissimilar to last season.
The association’s biggest issue was a proposed lane reservation fee from pool managers, Aligned Leisure, which was at a level that would eventually cause the clubs to go broke.
“We don’t actually know if the lane reservation fee is off the table,” Shiels said.
“Previously there was an agreement to leave it till the end of the season, but the next year we had to agree to the lane reservation tax, so that’s really been the only change.
“We don’t have to agree to it upfront, but I don’t know if it’s still there and there’s more work to be done.”
Shiels also hopes commonsense prevails with another proposal from Aligned Leisure requiring additional lifeguards if there’s more than 100 people in the pool area.
The Royal Life Saving Society guidelines currently state there must be a minimum of one lifeguard for up to 100 people.
“For some of the bigger meets, we worked out we’d need 15 lifeguards and they typically run with one, maybe two everywhere else in the state,” Shiels said.
As it stands, the Ovens and Murray’s first event, the Albury open meet, will go ahead as scheduled on Sunday, October 28.
Ovens and Murray Water Polo Association president Brendan Dickie revealed the season has been pushed back a week due to the ongoing discussions surrounding the pools.
Round one of water polo action will run from on Friday, October 19 to Sunday, October 21.
“We normally start two weeks into October, but this along with other things have impacted us,” Dickie said.
“We’re working out everything in the next week to have it ready to go.
“The A grade is all sorted and the lower grades should be sorted soon.
“Some put in extra teams and some took teams out, so it’s a work in progress.
“Because it’s a short transition between the end of football and the start of water polo, and with school holidays at the start of it, it’s always pretty hard.”
Dickie expects the format to be similar to last season, with possibly only slight changes to the number of teams across each grade.
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